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Financial News: French Private Sector Contracts In May

French Private Sector Contracts In May

05/21/2020 - 03:50:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - The French private sector contracted in May but the pace of reduction eased considerably from April's unprecedented fall as some firms began to reopen after restrictions to curb the spread of coronavirus eased, survey data from IHS Markit showed Thursday.

The composite output index rose sharply to 30.5 in May from 11.1 in April. However, a score below 50 indicates contraction and was moderately below economists' forecast of 32.0.

The softer decrease in output was driven by slower declines in output in both the manufacturing and service sectors. The services Purchasing Managers' Index advanced to 29.4 in May from 10.2 in April. The expected reading was 27.8.

Likewise, the manufacturing PMI came in at 40.3 in May versus 31.5 a month ago and the forecast of 36.1.

"Given the sharp contraction in first quarter GDP caused by only two weeks in lockdown, the latest PMI data suggest that we are set for colossal reduction in economic activity during the second quarter," Eliot Kerr, an economist at IHS Markit said.

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